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Primus Pilus

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Primus Pilus last won the day on June 18 2019

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About Primus Pilus

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  • Birthday 03/13/1971

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    Suburbia, Michigania USA

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  1. Primus Pilus

    UNRV Site Ownership Change

    It's been a terribly long time since I've visited here, posted in the forum or written any content... and I'm obviously a year behind this particular topic. When Christian (Viggen), Jon (Moonlapse) and I started this UNRV project over 15 years ago, none of us ever imagined it would be anything more than our own little personal corner of the internet. I can't speak for my two old partners but I know the hundreds (probably thousands really) of hours spent writing the original content is still a particularly proud lifetime achievement for me personally. While it seems that our good old days of rapid fire forum post activity have probably been beaten down by the preferred social media platforms, it's fun to scroll through the endless depth of conversation, history and general banter that still populates this massive forum (and I do still see a few old familiar faces with an occasional post). I'm thrilled to see my writing still has a public home after all these years and that it must play some small part in helping to advance general knowledge of Roman history. (though I sure wish I had had an editor back then... I still cringe a bit on certain articles) Peter, for what it's worth, and quite belatedly, I wish you the very best of luck with UNRV! - Chris Heaton
  2. Sorry everyone... we have determined that some of the site load problems (and outages) we've been having are related to forum spam and bot activity. Therefore it's necessary to upgrade the forum and the security features. While it looks strange for the moment, hopefully it won't be too much trouble. In the coming days, we'll get the look reskinned to the more familiar theme.
  3. Primus Pilus

    Site down

    Hi guys! While none of this makes any sense to me, here's what I did: I made some recommended changes to the robots.txt file that should slow down the numerous indexing bots that are rummaging through the site. Hopefully that will keep the host from shutting us down due to overloading the system.
  4. Primus Pilus

    Site down

    The problem appears to be an overload of resource usage... we're working with the host to identify the exact cause and to eliminate it. Hope to have this fixed soon, but there might be short term issues.
  5. Primus Pilus


    Crassus may have displayed a greater sense of ego than most contemporaries, he was still definitely a product of the political atmosphere of the time. To his credit, and despite his taking advantage of political opportunities as they arose, he seems to have been less indulgent in the whims of supreme power than his partners in the triumvirate. While his money may have helped make Caesar, he did not use that same financial and military authority to direct the Republic to his personal whims. He certainly showed political acumen, and he could easily be charged as an enabler, but in the end Crassus always seemed a bit of a pawn amongst the true manipulators. I don't mean to suggest that he was a bumbling patsy who unwittingly fell in with the proverbial wrong crowd, but his ulterior motive seems that of a man seeking fame and glory in the historical Roman context rather than seeking absolute authority. His actions were among many cogs in the wheel that brought down the Republic and I don't personally absolve him of that, but unlike a Caesar, I never felt that he desired the finality that eventually came.
  6. Primus Pilus

    United States of America-the Modern Rome?

    Discussion, whatever the topic, is obviously encouraged, but the use of baiting language is not. For now I'll move it to the arena, but let's refrain from the use of ad hominem (eg patriotards, conservatards).
  7. Primus Pilus

    Game of Thrones

    I consider the two first books in the series to be among the very top of my favorite fiction list. Unfortunately, since George Martin writes so slowly, there are fears that he will never finish the series - thereby leaving everyone hanging. Alas In any case, the show is very good - atmospherically authentic I think with character traits that seem in line with Martin's original concepts. I do wonder though, if someone coming in cold without having read the book would get the full grasp of the story. Yes, it's easy to like and dislike certain characters, but obviously much has to be tweaked to fit it into a television environment. Regardless, I'm enjoying it very much, and considering I last read Game of Thrones sometime around 10 years ago, it's a nice refresher for the supposed next book due out in July (I'm definitely not holding my breath).
  8. Primus Pilus

    Roman Legion VS American Civil War Soldiers

    I figure its a good thing that the Romans didn't wear pants... it'd be less uncomfortable as they shit themselves.
  9. Primus Pilus

    Which Legion crucified Jesus Christ?

    This is from an old post regarding the Passion of the Christ movie and the language of the Romans stationed in and around Judaea of the time, but it may have some relevance here. I'm not sure how well my assertion holds water - as much can change regarding archaeological research since I posted it about 7 years ago. Anyway, here was the post: Legionaries active during the time period of the film were still mostly recruited from Italy, but it was changing rapidly. Therefore, it is very likely that most active citizen legionaries still would have spoken Latin. Specifically in Judaea there were 3 known cohorts of Auxilia. There were two cohorts of auxiliaries in Jerusalem and a third cohort guarded the capital Caesarea. Two cohorts of infantry and one squadron of cavalry served throughout the province. The Cavalry cohort was Ala I Sebastenorum that consisted of Samaritans and probably spoke a local dialect and perhaps Greek. We also know of the existence of a Cohors I Sebastenorum, which was also a Samaritan unit with similar language possibilities. Other known units that functioned in Judaea are the Cohors Prima Italica Civium Romanorum, the Cohors Secunda Italica Civium Romanorum and the Italian Cohors Prima Augusta. These are obviously Italian units and it's still likely that Latin would've been the primary language. Of regular legionary units, Judaea at the time was considered under the command of the Legate in Syria. The known Legions operating in the region at the time of Christ were: III Gallica - Recruits from Cisalpine and Transalpine Gaul and likely Latin speakers. VI Ferrata - Recruits from Cisalpine and Transalpine Gaul and likely Latin speakers. X Fretensis - Recruits from Italy and Latin speakers. XII Fulminata - Also orignally Gallic or Italian recruits and likely speakers of Latin. However all Legions were supplemented at times by recruits of various regions. It is possible that any of these main contingents would've have been supplemented by local citizens in the east. So yes, there were probably some Greek speakers, but the main body of troops would've have been from a Latin origin and the tradition of language, it would seem to me, would've required new recruits to speak the most common tongue of the main body. However, in Judaea, communicating with the locals would've been easier in Greek (as a commonly known tongue among all the various parties), but there is no reason to believe that the Legions would care what was easy for the locals. An argument can be made for either side, I suppose. Inscription evidence, letters and so forth are mainly in Latin. But only so much survives, and inscriptions and letters don't necessarily indicate what the spoken language was.
  10. Simply speaking... the results of several centuries of conquests and expansion. We all know that the Roman legion wasn't superior in every engagement, battle and war, but the legacy of the military machine is the known cumulative result. The Romans typically fared badly in major campaigns against eastern armies (eg Persian, Parthia, etc.) save for a few exceptions, but neither did those armies make massive inroads against Roman territorial domination... until long after the collapse of the west.
  11. Primus Pilus

    avatar questions

    I suppose the good thing is that your name matches your attitude. Congratulations!
  12. Primus Pilus

    Need Some Resources

    I'm afraid I'm not familiar with the story, so it's very difficult to track down potential source information. Is there a way to look up the original story and find the person's name or any additional information to help track it down? Even a general time frame will help indicate which possible ancient source authors we may be looking. For example, if the story dates to Pompey the Great's "conquests" it may indicate certain authors as the likely sources, whereas there are any number of sources on the eastern expeditions in the centuries that followed. If it's a Muslim story it would likely date to the Byzantine era which changes the potential sources dramatically.
  13. Consider today... there are many who believe that nations like China and India, etc. are on the rise whereas the USA is in decline. Conversely, there are people today who take a contrarian position and believe that the Chinese rise and its economy is a house of cards, and the USA can recover. There any number of positions in between The truth is irrelevant here. The point is that much like modern people, the ancients have proven to have differences of opinion and belief systems on every possible point of interest. I believe that it is unquestionable that there were people in position of leadership who "knew" that Rome was failing, while there were also those who couldn't fathom the possibility. I simply can't or won't believe that there was an institutional understanding that Rome would eventually fail, simply because others had. Even if there was, there is certainly no consensus to when such a failure might occur, or how, or why.
  14. A couple random semi-connected thoughts... Is it truly looters or is it the radical Islamic rejection of "western" heritage and ideals? Tourism being such a giant industry in Egypt, destruction of cultural icons certainly won't aid anyone in the future. I understand that many Egyptians may feel that the expenditures of tourists only fill the coffers of the elite and the aristocracy, but everything has a relative domino effect.
  15. Primus Pilus

    Documentaries on Ancient History are dying out?

    Why make expensive documentaries when you can put 15 people in a house for $50 each and watch them belittle eachother endlessly in between bouts of aggressive sexual tension? Seriously though, the expense of documentary production (if they are a quality production of course) vs. low budget "reality" series production (yes, even on channels that have a traditional history focus - in the US market think American Pickers, Pawn Stars, etc.) means that there are fewer opportunities for the advertising dollars and fewer production companies with the appetite to pursue them. They will be fewer for sure, but I honestly hope that the competition continues to improve quality and impact of the historical documentary.